Preston North End will have wing-backs high on their shopping list in the summer transfer window

Wing-backs will feature highly on Preston North End’s summer shopping list as Ryan Lowe looks to make his style of play work as effectively as possible at Deepdale.

By Dave Seddon
Tuesday, 22nd February 2022, 12:35 pm
Updated Tuesday, 22nd February 2022, 12:36 pm

Lilywhites manager Lowe has swapped and changed players in the wide positions, particularly on the left.

However, with no one in the squad currently falling in the category of a ‘natural’ wing-back, it will be an area Lowe looks at this summer.

Brad Potts has played the majority of the games under Lowe at right wing-back, having been moved there from midfield.

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Preston North End's Brad Potts with Ryan Lowe

Ali McCann was the right wing-back in Lowe’s first game in charge in December, with Tom Barkhuizen also having featured there.

On the other side of the pitch, Greg Cunningham, Josh Earl, Joe Rafferty, Scott Sinclair and Barkhuizen have all played at left wing-back.

Cunningham currently sidelined with a calf strain, has seemed the best fit in that position so far.

The experienced Irishman has had a new lease of life since Lowe came in.

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It is hoped Cunningham’s absence will not stretch too far beyond the end of the month. Lowe said: “We haven’t got a natural out-and-out wing-back at the club at the moment.

“We have got wingers, we have got full-backs, we’ve got right centre-backs and left centre-backs.

“Players have to be coached into playing as a wing-back.

“That is what we have done with Brad Potts who is doing really well there.

“When we spoke to Pottsy early on about it, we knew he had played right-back earlier in his career.

“There are parts of playing as a wing-back which come naturally to him but there’s other stuff you need to do as a wing-back.

“It’s the off-the-ball stuff, where you need to be when the ball is coming down the other side of the pitch.

“When you get into attacking areas, you don’t want to be turning down chances to cross the ball.

“On the other side from Pottsy, we’ve been trying to get Josh Earl up the pitch to get crosses in.

“It’s a position we have to coach people in but we haven’t had too many coaching days because of the schedule of games which has been relentless.

“I feel that pre-season is a massive part of where you want to start and get to in terms of identity and tactical stuff.”